Francis of Guernica, written by BMI composer Marcus Hummon, was given its world premiere on July 21 at the BMG Media Room in Nashville. The theatrical concert, produced by Actors Bridge Ensemble, is set during the Spanish Civil War and focuses on the inhuman sacrifice of the village of Guernica -- immortalized by Pablo Picasso in his 1937 mural -- and its effect on an artist, a teacher and a would-be saint. Hummon wrote more than a dozen songs for Francis, including one collaboration with Martie Siedel of the Dixie Chicks (�Someday�).
BMG Music Publishing�s Karen Conrad, Francis of Guernica creator Marcus Hummon and Arista recording artist Shannon Brown
Actors Bridge Artistic Director Bill Feehely directed the production and plays Picasso. Mike Eldred, who recently starred in the national touring company of The Civil War, portrays Francis.
Cast member Curtis Shaw is greeted by BMI writers Eleanor McEvoy and Jennifer Kimball
Violinist Andrea Zonn, a member of Hummon�s Red Wing Band, is strings arranger and co-musical director with Hummon. Francis of Guernica marks the second Hummon work to be produced by Actors Bridge; last year, he and Feehely collaborated on the critically-acclaimed musical American Duet, which told the stories of an African-American country singer and a white world music singer in South Africa.
(Clockwise) Francis cast members Vali Forrister, Mike Eldred and Michelle Prentice with post-premiere party host Russ Taff at Figlio�s on the Row
A staff writer with BMG Music Publishing, Grammy-nominated Hummon has enjoyed success on the country and pop charts with the hits �The Cheap Seats� (Alabama), �Love Is The Right Place� (Bryan White), and the #1 singles �Ready To Run� and �Cowboy, Take Me Away� (Dixie Chicks), �One Of These Days� (Tim McGraw) and �Only Love� (Wynonna). His third album, Looking For The Child, was released earlier this year on Velvet Armadillo Records.
BMI�s Caroline Davis (c) with BMI writers Andrea Zonn (co-musical director) and Bill Feehely (director/cast member)
Francis of Guernica plays through Sunday, July 30.